May 25, 2017

May 2017 APAC News Vol. 10, No. 2

Staff Mentor Program Can Promote Career Growth

UNDER THE auspices of UIC Human Resources’ Organizational Effectiveness, UIC’s Staff Mentor Program can promote career growth at the University by fostering supportive relationships for the sharing of knowledge, experience, and organizational insight. The program is open to Academic Professionals and Civil Service employees.

IN THE program, mentees are paired with mentors whose experiences align with the mentees’ career goals. Mentors provide support, advocacy, and insight to help the mentees navigate the campus’s organization, solve work-related challenges, and progress toward professional objectives.

THE PROGRAM creates opportunities for professional development for both mentors and mentees. The mentor relationship strengthens organizational savvy and engagement beyond the scope of other workplace training or coaching activities and helps to build a more supportive and progressive campus community.

DESIGNED TO support mentor-mentee pairs for a year (although many pairs continue their relationship beyond that time), the program provides:
  • Campus-wide open application for both mentors and mentees;
  • Goal-oriented mentor and mentee pairing;
  • Learning events and webinars;
  • Guides and resources to support productive relationships; and
  • Coaching and assistance for mentor pairs. 
THE FOCUS in 2017 is to grow program participation and increase the number of program liaisons available to provide practical support to mentor pairs.

MENTEES, MENTORS, and program liaisons are needed.

MENTEES GAIN valuable insight to help develop confidence and competence as well as guidance to help identify and pursue career opportunities at UIC.

MENTORS ASSIST mentees as they establish themselves in an organization, and may enhance a mentee’s career through sharing organizational knowledge; communicating and discussing an organization’s focus, initiatives, and changes.

A PROGRAM liaison is assigned to promote a successful year for each mentoring pair. Liaisons can help with logistics, and advise on approaches to meetings and communication.

APAC Lineup Set

WITH SEVERAL members’ terms up in the spring, APAC has a slightly new lineup of committee members.

JOINING THE representatives is Stacey Valuch, Project Manager, Academic Computing and Communications Center. Her term is three years long.

RE-JOINING THE committee for new three-year terms are Nester Komolafe, Contract Coordinator, Office of Business and Financial Services (OBFS) Purchasing; and Julie Kong, Director of Research Services, School of Public Health.

LEAVING THE committee is John Brach, Director of Human Resources, Institute for Health Research and Policy.

THREE SENATORS represent APs in the University Senate. The term of Marelet Kirda, Assistant to the Vice Chancellor for Research, ended in 2017.

JOINING THE Senate for a three-year term is Kathleen H. Stauffer, Assistant Dean for Administration, Institute for Policy and Civic Engagement and Urban Planning and Public Affairs.


APAC STILL has three seats available for interested persons.

APAC is composed of up to 18 representatives, elected for staggered three-year terms so that approximately one-third of the membership is elected each year. APAC represents all Academic Professionals (APs) at UIC. APs who are permanent or visiting and appointed at least 50% time comprise the electorate and are eligible to vote, and to be candidates for election.

THOSE WHO serve on APAC do so in addition to their regular UIC duties. Members are expected to attend monthly meetings and serve on at least one standing or ad-hoc subcommittee.

FOR MORE information on how to apply, contact Ahlam Al-Kodmany, PhD, at (312) 996-7458 or

Nominate for a CAPE Award

THE CHANCELLOR’S Academic Professional Excellence (CAPE) Award, established in 1988, recognizes the demonstrated excellence of Academic Professional staff members and affirms UIC’s highest regard for the contributions of this important community to UIC. This year, six academic professionals will receive the CAPE Award, which provides a $1,000 permanent increase to the honoree’s salary and a $2,000 one-time cash award. Nominations are welcomed from UIC faculty, students, academic professionals, and support staff. Chancellor Michael Amiridis also encourages UIC personnel to resubmit past nominees who have not yet received a CAPE Award.

THE NOMINATING form, procedures, and eligibility criteria are online. The deadline for nominations and all supporting credentials is noon on Friday, June 23, 2017. Awards will be presented Tuesday, Nov. 7, at the UIC Employee Recognition ceremony and reception at the UIC Forum. Details will follow closer to the event.

PLEASE CONTACT APAC’s Ahlam Al-Kodmany, Chair of the 2017 CAPE Selection Committee, at or (312) 355-6207 with any questions. Information will also is on the APAC website (under Resources/Awards & Recognition).

APAC Meetings Scheduled

ALL APs are invited to the APAC meeting, usually held monthly at 12:30 p.m. on scheduled dates. Meetings alternate between East and West campuses with dates and times posted in advance on the APAC website. Click here for the meeting schedule. The last meeting of this fiscal year is scheduled for Tuesday, June 13, 12:30 to 2 p.m. in 1152 MBRB. APAC will not hold monthly meetings this July or August. For information, call (312) 413-9299.

Tammy Todor New GA for APAC

Tammy Todor is APAC’s new Graduate Assistant.
APAC HAS a new Graduate Assistant for Fall 2017,Tammy Todor, who is seeking her MS in Management Information Systems from UIC.

“I HOPE to bring my organization and communications skills to the table and help APAC in any way I can,” Todor said.

ORIGINALLY FROM Romania, Todor has lived in Chicago for the past year working in the digital department of a Chicago event production company, AgencyEA.

ALREADY HOLDING a BA in advertising from Michigan State University and an MS in management from the University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business, Todor hopes to graduate from UIC in 2018.

“MY GOAL is to find a job in project or account management at a tech company,” Todor said. “I chose this degree because I wanted to work in the interaction of technology and business, which is why I think these would be fitting roles for me after graduation.”

TODOR DESCRIBES her APAC duties as recording minutes at monthly meetings, scheduling meetings/events, facilitating communication among APAC members and across campus, completing paperwork related to APAC activities, assisting sponsors, maintaining the APAC website, assisting with special projects, and tackling other initiatives as assigned.

WHEN NOT working, Todor enjoys cooking, working out, and hiking. She also is proud of having taught Bodycombat Group Fitness at a YMCA in Michiana, IN, for two years.

APAC Vice-Chair Honored

APAC’s Ahlam Al-Kodmany, receiving an award
from Congressman Danny K. Davis.
AHLAM AL-KODMANY, PhD, Vice-Chair of APAC, Chair of the CAPE (Chancellor’s Academic Professional Excellence) Award Committee, member of the University Professional Personnel Advisory Committee (UPPAC), and Administrative Director of the University of Illinois Cancer Center, was named an Outstanding Woman of Excellence by Chicago’s 7th Congressional District Multi Ethnic Advisory Task Force in a ceremony earlier this year.
ESTABLISHED IN 2010 by Congressman Danny K. Davis (D-7th), the task force and its annual awards gala is a community initiative to recognize women from different ethnic backgrounds who have made significant contributions to their respective fields and communities.
AL-KODMANY, WHO is Palestinian-American, is one of 15 women recognized by the task force in 2017 for her exemplary service in the community and for being a role model to all women.
“I AM grateful to Congressman Davis and Dr. Robert Winn [Associate Vice Chancellor, Community Based Practice}, who epitomize and embody the essence of multi-culturalism and diversity, and who provide women like me a space to thrive,” Al-Kodmany said. “As an institution for the public, our ability to come together to build relationships around our strengths instead of barriers that isolate and extinguish hope are what make the UI Cancer Center and the University of Illinois at Chicago a multi-ethnic force to reckon with.”
AL-KODMANY HAS worked at UIC for 28 years and was named administrative director of the UI Cancer Center in 2016.

Meditation Workshop Successful

MEDITATION: GOING inward for better health, an APAC workshop, was held on May 2, from noon to 1 p.m., Approximately 45 people attended. The workshop was held under the auspices of the APAC Professional Development Committee: Julie Kong, Kim Mayfield, and Tracy Sikorski. Look for announcements of future APAC workshops.


New APAC member Stacey Valuch.
Stacey Valuch Joins APAC

ONE OF the newest members of APAC is Stacey Valuch (pronounced “Val-uk”), Project Manager, Academic Computing and Communications Center (ACCC).

“I DECIDED to join the APAC Board because I have a genuine interest in contributing and staying up-to-date with AP-related topics, and wish to help keep others informed as well,” Valuch said.

“MEMBERSHIP ON the APAC Board allows me an opportunity to speak up for my fellow APs - keeping our best interests in mind - to help make sure that we are represented in decisions made by UI system leadership.  It also allows me to be a part of conversations that have a direct effect on APs, because we are a great part of the contributions to our organization”, she explained.

VALUCH HAS worked in ACCC for a year and a half, and previously had worked in UIC Human Resources for a year.

“IN MY current role, I facilitate the project management lifecycle for ACCC projects,” she said. “This includes, among other things, the work to initiate a new project, plan out the tasks related to the project, coordinate the efforts to keep the work on track, and coordinate the project resources, including a continuous review of risks, team members, budgets and overall communication” she said.

A CERTIFIED Project Management Professional (PMP), Valuch has previously been a Project Manager and Lead Global Business Analyst for Kellogg Co.; Business Operations Analyst and Project Lead for DeVry University; and an Education Manager and Training Specialist for SAP Fieldglass.

“OUTSIDE OF work, I enjoy trying out new BBQ recipes with my husband and an occasional evening of karaoke,” she concluded.


UIC Police Committed to Your Safety

THE UIC Police Department is a full-service, fully sworn police force of officers with arrest powers throughout the State of Illinois. The department works closely with Chicago Police and other municipal departments, as well as federal, state, county, and other public safety agencies. They operate 24/7, 365 days a year, including holidays. 

IN FULL partnership with the University and its surrounding communities, the department is committed to the safety and security of the campus and its neighborhoods, to create the most enriching academic environment and quality of life for all UIC's staff, students, faculty, and visitors.

THE DEPARTMENT’S Vision Statement says: “We will strive to empower and develop our sworn officers and civilian support personnel to achieve excellence through respect, service, preparedness, engagement, communication, and trust. Our commitment to transparency, community policing, collaboration, innovative practices and on-going training will ensure the highest professional standard of public safety service. Our goal is to foster safety and security and create an environment for continuous growth and intellectual advancement for all.”

CALL UIC POLICE whenever you see or suspect a crime has occurred or that a potentially dangerous situation is developing.

WE CANNOT be a successful organization without assistance from the community, so please report any suspicious activity or persons to the UIC Police Department immediately,” said Kevin L. Booker, Chief of the UIC Police.

A BICYCLE Registration Program also is run by the UIC Police. Its purpose is to increase campus community awareness of the problem of bicycle theft and encourage the registration of as many bikes as possible to facilitate the recovery of stolen bicycles. Bicycles are registered through the community relations unit. To register your bike please go to To inquire about a stolen bike, call the UIC Police Department. 

TO CONTACT the UIC Police, in an emergency, dial 5-5555 from a landline or (312) 355-5555 from your cellphone. In a non-emergency situation, dial (312) 996-2830. The TDD number is (312) 413-9323.


Editor’s Note: “The Continuing Crisis” is a section of APAC News, which links to news pertinent to the State budget crisis and other financial matters as they affect the University and Academic Professionals. These news outlets are not affiliated with or endorsed by APAC.
“SOLVING THE Illinois budget crisis isn’t as easy as you think,” Reboot Illinois, May 19, 2017:

Vol. 10, No. 2 May 2017

APAC News is published by the Academic Professional Advisory Committee of the University of Illinois at Chicago.
ISSN 1946-1860
Editor: William S. Bike
Chair: Colleen Piersen
Vice Chair: Ahlam Al-Kodmany
Secretary: Mary Berta
Treasurer: Kimberly Mayfield
Web Chair: Jeff Alcantar